Exciting ‘meet the Normans’ event at Bolsover Castle

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Norman history will be brought to life at Bolsover Castle in Derbyshire on Saturday 23 and Sunday 24 July thanks to English Heritage’s exciting Meet the Normans event.

Visitors to the castle can expect a thrilling weekend of hands-on, interactive experiences as they travel back in time to 1066 and celebrate the 950th anniversary of the Norman Conquest. The event is the first in a spectacular series of summer holiday activities.

Families will be able to roam Norman encampments, meet the warriors and their horses and hear tantalising tales about their battles with the Saxons. Awesome weaponry will also be on display, as will the Normans’ battle skills as audiences watch them fight on horseback and on foot. A Norman falconry display will be another crowd pleaser which will capture the attention of all ages.

Debbie Houldsworth, Events Manager at English Heritage, said: “1066: Year of the Normans is one of the most important periods in the history of England and visitors to Bolsover Castle will be able to step back in time and experience it first-hand. It promises to be a fantastic event with lots of things to see and activities to keep the whole family entertained, so come down and enjoy and kick-start the summer holidays.”

Every week throughout the school holidays English Heritage will host weekly events at activities at Bolsover Castle to keep children entertained. The summer programme begins with Norman Knight Time from Monday 25 – Friday July 29, where little ones can become knights for the day.

Roundheads and Cavaliers takes place from Monday 1 – Friday 5 August and will see children transported back to Civil War England where they’ve been recruited into King Charles I’s army. They will be able to discover what it takes to be a soldier, test their nerve and hear tales from the battlefield. This is followed by Gruesome Goings On (Monday 8 – Friday 12 August) where they will hear about painful historical punishments, learn tricks to amaze their family and create their own tonic to take home.

Awesome Archaeology (Monday 15 – Friday 19 August) is ideal for children who love to get their hands dirty – using brushes they will uncover artefacts from ancient times, have the opportunity to sketch them in situ and consider what they may be and the significance of the finds. They can also join Bolsover Castle’s Tech Team and look for artefacts under the ground with metal detectors, then search for the remains of a lost building on the dig site using a Geofizz kit.

Castle Attack then takes place from Monday August 22 to Friday August 26 when children can join in with a miniature castle siege and play mediaeval games that time forgot.

The summer will end with a magnificent Grand Medieval Joust on the bank holiday weekend (Sunday 28 – Monday 29 August) – knights will clash on horseback in a thundering battle of honour and bravery.

Tickets to the Meet the Normans event on Saturday 23 and Sunday 24 July cost £12.20 for adults, £7.10 for children aged 5-15, £10.90 for concessions or £31.50 for a family ticket. There will also be a small charge for English Heritage members. Tickets can be purchased online at www.english-heritage.org.uk/bolsover or by calling 0370 333 1183. More information about the summer holiday activity events can also be found online.